|The Structure of a Diamond|
|Proportion refers to the angles and relative measurements of a polished diamond. More than any other feature, proportions determine a diamond's optical properties. Studies have shown that table size, crown angle, and pavilion depth have a dramatic effect on a diamond's appearance.|
Symmetry is a grading term for the exactness of shape and placement of facets. Variations in symmetry include off-center culets and tables, poor facet alignment, misshapen facets, out-of-round girdles, and wavy girdles.
A) When a ray of light touches the surface of a diamond, part of the light is reflected back, this is external reflection.
B) The rest of the ray penetrates the stone and is then reflected toward the center of the diamond. This is known as refraction.
C) The ray of light is reflected to the surface, where it is seen as the colors of the spectrum. This is known as dispersion.
|The Value of a Diamond: The Four C's|
|The Cut is the factor that determines the brilliance of a diamond. A classic round brilliant cut diamond has 58 facets : 33 on the top, 24 on the bottom, and the culet (1 point at the bottom). Each of the diamond's facets must be placed in exact geometric relation to one another when the stone is being cut. Quality diamonds must be properly cut and not "spread", which means that the proper proportions are compromised to make the diamond weigh more.|
The weight of a diamond is measured in carats. But, the carat weight alone is almost meaningless unless you also consider the cut, clarity and color of the diamond. A large diamond is not very valuable if it lacks brilliance, purity and high-grade color. However, since larger stones are rarer than smaller ones, diamond value rises exponentially with carat weight. Therefore, a diamond weighing 3.0 carats, will always be worth more than three 1.0 carat stones of the same quality. No two diamonds are exactly alike, and you must weigh all of the factors - color, cut, clarity and carat weight - when making your buying decision. Our jewelry consultants will gladly give you expert advice to help you find that perfect diamond.
As a precious metal Platinum was first introduced after close to the end of the 19th century. The main characteristics of platinum are its deep luster and a vivid white color. Platinum is much more valuable than pure gold or palladium. Platinum is often used to produce the finest jewelry and for setting expensive gemstones. Platinum is one of the most popular metals of choice for ring settings, because the strength and color of platinum magnifies the brilliance and depth of diamonds and most precious gems.
The Platinum Group Metals (PGM) commonly occur together in nature and are among the scarcest of the metallic elements.
Along with gold and silver, they are known as precious or noble metals. They occur as native alloys in placer deposits or, more commonly, in lode deposits associated with nickel and copper. Nearly all of the world's supply of these metals are extracted from lode deposits in four countries--the Republic of South Africa, the U.S.S.R., Canada, and the United States. The Republic of South Africa is the only country that produces all six PGM in substantial quantities.
Palladium (symbol Pd), relatively rare, silvery white and relatively soft metal. Was discovered in 1804 by the British chemist William Hyde. Palladium is often alloyed with gold, to produce white gold.
Iridium (symbol Ir), white, brittle and extremely hard metal. The alloy, which contains about 10 percent iridium and 90% platinum, is much harder than pure platinum. Alloys containing larger percentages of iridium are used in making precision and standard instruments, surgical tools, pen points.
Osmium (symbol Os) bluish-white, brittle metal. Along with iridium, osmium is generally considered the most dense element. Was discovered in 1803 by the British chemist Smithson Tennant. Osmium and platinum alloys are used for standard weights and measures.
In 1876 a notorious German treasure hunter discovered a huge number of different works of art made of pure gold in the ancient citadel of Mycenie located in the mid-eastern Peloponnese of Greece.
You should see a marking such as '14k' or '18k' to indicate the karat, and you may sometimes also see the manufacturers registered trademark or the country of origin.
Pure gold (which is always yellow) is too soft for making jewelry. The metal alloys that are mixed with pure gold for strength can also modify the resulting color to produce different shades of yellow, white, and pink gold. White gold was originally developed to imitate platinum, and usually contains 25% nickel and zinc.
There are many other factors that determine the value of a gold jewelry piece:
Design - designer jewelry is more expensive, especially if it is a one of a kind piece.
SilverSilver has been known and used for thousands of years and was believed to have magical properties which could promote healing and bring good luck. In ancient times, silver was used for jewelry, ornaments, utensils, and as a substance that could be bartered for other goods and services. This belief that silver had an underlying "value" led eventually to its use as the basis for monetary systems such as that of the Roman Empire and as a means of paying for international trade.
Silver is the most reflective and affordable of the precious metals. Its lower price permits bold, innovative looks. Sterling silver jewelry is often fashioned by top designers and can range in price from hundreds to thousands of dollars. Sterling silver is the standard of quality for jewelry containing 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper.